One Very Famous Soccer Player - Pele

in Soccer

Pele was born Edson Arantes do Nascimento in October of 1940, and would become one of the most famous soccer players to ever play the game. In his native Brazil, he is lauded as the greatest footballer of all time, since they call the sport by its original name there.

Pele grew up in poverty in Bauru, and earned money working as a servant in tea shops. He could not afford a real ball, and practiced with a sock stuffed with newspaper, or a grapefruit.

In Brazil, Pele is a national hero. In addition to his accomplishments on the field, he has been declared the football ambassador of the world by FIFA, which is the governing body of international soccer. He has also used his fame to speak up for improvement of the conditions of the poor in our society. When he scored his 1000th goal, Pele dedicated it to the poorest children in Brazil.

Pele started playing for a local club at the age of 15, and was on his national team by age 16. He won his first World Cup at the young age of 17. European clubs wanted a chance to sign him, but the Brazilian football rules at that time helped Santos FC to keep Pele signed for almost twenty years, until 1974.

Pele played the positions of striker, inside forward, and what later would be called the playmaker position. His natural athleticism and technique were world-renowned, and he was praised for his excellent passing and dribbling, heading, pace and his ever-present goal scoring.

In 1977, Pele played in an exhibition match between Santos and the Cosmos. It was played in front of a sold-out Giants Stadium, and was seen on TV, on ABC's Wide World of Sports. At halftime, his number was retired, and after the game he ran around the field, an American flag in one hand and a Brazilian flag in the other.

Pele is in an elite group of famous soccer players worldwide, and he was the only footballer to ever win the World Cup with three different teams. Since he retired in 1977, Pele has remained an ambassador for the sport, and he has also taken on some commercial ventures and acting roles.

Though he was one of the all time famous soccer players, Pele had some trying times off the field. He married in 1966 and had three children with then-wife Rosemeri dos Reis Cholby, but they divorced in 1978. He remarried in 1994 to Assiria Lemos Seixas. She gave birth in 1996 to twins, conceived through fertility treatments.

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One Very Famous Soccer Player - Pele

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This article was published on 2010/03/27